The Denver household needs harder penalties for officer charged with deadly drunk driving – CBS Denver
(CBS4) – A Denver family calls for justice after an alleged drunk driver killed and killed two loved ones and wrongly injured another in New Mexico. The incident occurred in the early hours of May 1 on Interstate 25 near Tramway Boulevard in Albuquerque, New Mexico. According to a police report, the driver of a Ford F150 hit a GMC SUV while driving in the southbound northbound lane.
Alfredo Escaname-Hernandez, 50, and 21-year-old Diego Arellano Robles died on the spot. Fernando Arellano, 21, the driver of the GMC SUV, was rushed to hospital with serious injuries. According to the family, Arellano will remain in the hospital.
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“Receiving that call was probably the most devastating thing of my life,” said Federico Escaname, son of Alfredo.
Family members of the three victims tell CBS4 that loved ones went to Juarez, Mexico to visit the family. All three call Denver home.
“We have a family in Juarez, Mexico. They only made a short trip, ”said Escaname. “My father went down to help my cousins build their house down there.”
Brandon Barber, a probation officer with the Cuban Police Department and captain of the New Mexico National Guard, is now charged with three cases of vehicle murder, DWI and open container possession.
In a criminal complaint, MPs said Barber “smelled of alcohol” and had bloodshot eyes. An investigator also observed a half-consumed bottle of alcohol on the floor of the vehicle.
According to court records, this is the second time Barber has been arrested for DWI.
“It’s sadness, it’s really hopeless, it’s anger to know that this could have been completely preventable,” said Nora Escaname.
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Last week, prosecutors asked a judge to keep Barber in jail pending trial, but a district court judge released him from his parents under continued supervision through the court’s Pretrial Services program. Barber is banned from driving under the terms of his release and is drug and alcohol monitored by a SoberLink device.
Family members of the victims called the decision “offensive”.
“It’s not fair for him to come home to his parents under his care, but my father is not allowed to come home to my mother, my brother, my sister, my son,” said Federico Escaname. “Justice right now is just that you handle it the way it should be handled and make sure it doesn’t see the light of day.”
Escaname described his father Alfredo as a man of many professions whom family members and friends viewed as a father figure.
“Everyone loved my father,” he said.
Nora Escaname said Diego and Fernando are best friends as well as family members. She said the two were always joking and had exciting prospects ahead of them.
“Diego doesn’t get this opportunity anymore and we don’t know what my little brother will be like if he does,” she said.
According to the Cuban Police Chief Manuel Romero, Barber has been fired from his position as a probationary employee.
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Barber, who has served in the New Mexico National Guard for nearly 10 years, is also subject to legal action under the Uniformed Military Justice Code, a spokesman said.